Saturday, October 20, 2007

The Bottled Water Battle: At Least This Company Let's You Know What Type Of Water You're Drinking!

In the little town of Syracuse, Utah, the water appears crystalline and pure. The plastic container like any other water bottle you'd buy at your neighborhood 7-11. But the label tells another story altogether. It says: "North Davis Sewer District drinking water." If that's not enough to make you pee your pants, read on. This is not water from a fabled mountain spring. Nor is it a product of a soda pop conglomerate that claims the water has been double- or triple- or quadruple-purified. Folks at the sewer district, says sewer-district manager Kevin R. Cowan, hand out bottles to those who tour its facilities. The label says, "This water originated as all-natural sewage collected through high-quality reinforced concrete sewer lines in the high mountain valleys of northern Davis and southern Weber counties. It was then processed using state-of-the-art screening, grit removal, sedimentation/flotation, biological oxidation, solids contact conditioning, and chlorine disinfection on the way back to you. This system is usually effective in removing up to 94 percent of biodegradable pollutants...." Hmmm: 94 percent.

I'm hoping that the sewer district can remove all of the fecal matter before the water, as you may be about to toss your morning cereal, put into water bottles. It's list of ingredients includes Water, fecal matter, toilet paper, hair, lint, rancid grease, stomach acid and trace amounts of Pepto Bismol, chocolate, urine, body oils, dead skin, industrial chemicals (aluminum, copper, zinc, lead, chromium, nickel, molybdenum, selenium, silver arsenic, mercury,) ammonia, ... soil, laundry soap, bath soap, shaving cream, sweat, saliva, salt, sugar. No artificial colors or preservatives. Some variations in taste and/or color may occur due to holidays, predominant cuisine preference, infiltration/inflow, or sewer cross-connections." Yummy!

Layton Councilman Renny Knowlton, who represents the city on the sewer board, handed out the bottled water at a recent meeting. The response was tepid, to say the least. The district decided the bottles had promise as an inexpensive way to both have fun and promote water quality. As for the water inside the sewer district's bottles....In blue print down the side it says: "This bottle contains, pure, safe, drinkable water. Not a product of the North Davis Sewer District." In other words — "Just kidding!" This "refreshing" humor is trying to make a serious, instructive point. According to officials, "We make them (visitors) think it is the treatment product, but it's also a lesson about our environment ... (about) being more conscious about what goes down the drain. It's all in good fun."

Make you think twice about what goes into Naked Juice, hunh?